Our Two Cents: Our favorite factory color names
Paint doesn’t make the car for some, but others have indeed seen a lot of memorable colors on machinery. There’s where this episode Our Two Cents comes into play, as the team at Hagerty Media winds up creating content about colors with every new vehicle release and every passing model year. So let’s ask them a pressing question: What’s your favorite factory color name?
“Although it’s not my favorite Focus ST color—I’m a Performance Blue guy—Tangerine Scream is the best name.” — Chris Stark
“Evening Orchid, as created by GM designer Blaine Jenkins in the 1960s and seen on certain 1965 Chevys and Pontiacs.” — Joe DeMatio
Nori Green Pearl
“A long time ago my team combined several near-empty cans of paint to spray a dirt-track race car. We called the color Slappy White. Some of the car was flat, some was gloss. It wasn’t pretty, but it sure was funny (looking).” — Steven Cole Smith
“Ford Mystichrome, of course!” — Greg Ingold
“Radar Blue on the 1998 Corvette pace car special editions. It was clearly purple, but Corvette had good color naming: Sebring Silver. Competition Yellow. Bowling Green. Polo White. Torch Red. Laguna Blue.” — Todd Kraemer
Blanc Paros/Parian White
“My friend’s 1974 Cadillac is painted Victorian Amber Firemist, which is a $10 way of saying bronze. Detroit marketers were experts at coming up with $10 names for colors. Of course, every color sounds better in a foreign language. The Lamborghini Espada is painted Verde Pallido, which just means pale green.
But I think Citroen did it best; the DS and ID were offered in an amazing variety of colors with charmingly specific names, like Capucine (nasturtium, a type of perennial flower), and Escaille Blonde (pale tortoiseshell). My ’64 ID19 was pained AC102, Blanc Paros or Parian White, a reference to a type of marble commonly used in statuary, which is a perfect description of a white that is slightly grey, slightly blue, or slightly green depending on the light.” — Aaron Robinson
“Maybe it’s my tiny bit of Dutch heritage, but I’ve always loved orange. My first car was a 1974 Saab Sonett III in Indian Yellow. It was always fun seeing the look on people’s faces when you told them your very orange car was actually yellow.” — Ben Woodworth
“PUNK’N! The name for Stellantis’ orange has my vote. Through the years, Chrysler, FCA, Stellantis—whatever you wanna call ’em—has been the most bombastic with their color names, especially the High Impact glossies sprayed on its muscle cars. Sassy Grass, Tor-red, Top Banana—woo hoo! I’m glad they haven’t abandoned that schtick.” — Cameron Neveu
Medium Brown Metallic
“I somewhat dislike frilly frou-frou names for colors, as it reminds me of creative types that use 20 extra words to add impact to their statements. Sure, fancy words are great for marketing, hype building, etc. but colors don’t evoke imagery worthy of naming for me.
We have enough filler material in our lives, so give me straight-up Medium Brown Metallic all day!” — Sajeev Mehta
Blazing Saddle Pearl
“Mopar even had a great name for brown that Sajeev will appreciate. I remember I was at a Ram event and they debuted a color called Blazing Saddle Pearl.” — Brandan Gillogly
“Nope, that’s light brown pearlescent . . . a better name for such a lovely earth tone.” — Sajeev Mehta